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How Fast Food Varies From Country to Country


I recently saw a show on the Travel Channel about the difference between fast food in foreign countries and America. When I first tuned into this show I thought it would basically be about different ways to serve a Big Mac or Whopper. But the show ended up being a lot more entertaining and informative then that. For example, the Pizza Hut in Thailand serves toppings that include shrimp, fish and squid. The logic behind this strategy is to serve a pizza that appeals to local residents. When I first saw this pizza, I could hardly believe that it was from Pizza Hut. That's because they don't sell pizzas that look like this at the Pizza Hut in my community. There are also pizza's topped with lobster and scallops. A lot of people that live in Thailand say that they really love Pizza Hut because the pizzas are topped with very common ingredients. Common? Well, I guess for this part of the world these type of seafood items would be very common, even on a pizza. I also noticed that the interiors of these Pizza Huts are a lot more elegant looking then the ones in the United States. I don't know about the Pizza Hut's near you, but the interior of the ones near me are very simple and plain. Some of the stores I saw in Thailand and other countries were decorated with beautiful long curtains and colorful lighting. I guess this is also part of Pizza Hut's strategy to attract local customers. All this tells me that people in Thailand must have higher standards in fast food and store interiors then we do in the United States. I guess that this might be true to some extent, because whenever I go and pick up my pizza I don't really pay attention the decor. Most of the time I only interested in getting my pizza quickly.

Speaking of interiors, I was also very surprised to see how some McDonald's restaurants are decorated in foreign countries. One example includes restaurants in Japan that have some very cool and high quality interiors. The restaurants located in India also had much higher quality looking interiors then the McDonald's locations in the U. S. One particular location in India actually looked more like a five star dining establishment instead of a fast food restaurant. This restaurant had long curtains hanging from ceiling, and much more formal looking chairs and tables. The menu was also quite different, which consisted of a lot of meatless items. There was a corn pudding dessert, a burger made out of beans, and a breakfast soup made out of sausage, vegetables and broth. Although these food items sound interesting, I am not so sure they would go over well with U. S. based customers. This is because unfortunately, many in the U. S. prefer a lot of fat, sugar and grease. Maybe this is why people in other countries are much more healthier than we are.

Learning about fast food culture in other countries was very interesting. However, I am a believer that the best fast food to eat is the food you can cook quickly in your own kitchen.



Online Hackers Are Getting Bolder & Bolder


Over the past week I have seen story after story about a corporate business or government website getting hacked. This past week it was reported that the Federal Reserve website was hacked, which really got me concerned. For some reason I thought the Federal Reserve would have a better online security system that would prevent hacking. So if a high ranking agency like this can get hacked, where does that leave the rest of us? Based on what I read online, the group that hacked into the Federal Reserve website has not been identified. However, many in the technology industry are guessing that it is an international cyber attack ring. The article also stated that only a limited of amount of data was accessed, but for some reason I don't believe this. My thinking is that there was probably a lot of data and information stolen but Federal Reserve reps just don't want to admit it. From the Federal Reserve's standpoint, they most likely didn't want Americans to know this because it would create a panic. While I am not in a panic state, just hearing that the Federal Reserve's site was hacked into has me very, very concerned. I also feel very uneasy that the group or individual that did this has not been identified or arrested.

In addition to the Federal Reserve, I also believe I read somewhere that the White House website had also gotten hacked. This is also a situation that was very surprising to me. Just like I thought the Federal Reserve had strong online security measures, I also thought that the White House had high level online security measures in place. I mean this is the White House we are talking about here. Although the White House tried to down play this hacking incident, I believe that they were very worried about an individual or group being able to hack into their site. I know if I worked in the White House I would be very worried and concerned. I also believe that just like the Federal Reserve hacking incident, we will never really know what type of information these hackers were able to steal or access. One of things I am most concerned about in regards to this hacking incident is that hackers had an opportunity to view unpublished information regarding upcoming legislative bills. Many of these bills contain information about U. S. national security and the economy. If the site is compromised then these hackers have the ability to change words or phrases in this bill. I am not worried so much about the legislative bill information that can be accessed just by visiting the website, it's the security passwords and key codes for unpublished information that I am concerned about.

Along with these concerns, I am also wondering if any of these hacking incidents are connected to someone or several individuals working on the inside. I hate to think this way, but I have learned through life that some people will do just about anything when it comes to the almighty dollar. This includes compromising national security.



CEO's Who Believe in Giving Back


I read a very interesting article this past week which featured a list of the top philanthropic CEO's.

Although I did expect to see him on the list, I was surprised however to see that Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg was listed at number two. According to the article, Mark and his wife Priscilla have donated over four hundred million dollars. Wow. Imagine how much money you have to earn to be able to give away that type of money. Others who made the top ten list was Carl Ichan and Paul Allen. Ichan has donated close to one hundred and fifty million, while Allen has donated over three hundred million dollars. Not surprisingly at the number one spot was Warren Buffet, who has donated close to three billion. It was definitely great to see that all these millionaires and billionaires were donating some of their money. I am not sure where the money is being donated, but there is definitely a need in the health and education sectors. I would dare to say that just about every teacher today would be glad to have some extra funds to purchase needed supplies for their classes. In addition to this, there is also a strong need for financial support to fund various after school programs. Many of the kids who attend school today do not have any type of oversight and guidance once they leave school. This is because either their parents are working a full time jobs and don't get home until late in the evening, or they have parents that don't have any interest in their education. In either case, these kids need to be involved in a program that will provide guidance and challenge their minds.

In the healthcare sector there is a great need for financial funding at cancer centers and children hospitals. I would like to see these funds used to provide financial support to children who need special operations and also for cancer patients who can't afford treatment.

Out of the three hundred billion dollars that Warren Buffet has donated, I truly hope that some of it has gone to addressing homelessness issues. This especially includes the homeless epidemic currently affecting millions of U. S. veterans. Nothing is more sad to see then a man or woman who has given several years of their life for our country, having no place to live.

In regards to the millions that Mark Zuckerberg has donated, I hope that some of this money has been given to organizations that provide business training for up and coming entrepreneurs in low income neighborhoods. There are many people living in these communities who just need a chance to showcase their talent. I am specifically talking about those who have the talent and determination to get out of poverty and start their own business.

Along with major CEO's like Zuckerberg and Buffet, other CEO's that made the list include Jeffrey Katzenberg, Steven Spielberg, David Rubenstein, Jon Stryker, David Geffen, Helen Gurly Brown, David Koch, George Roberts, Eugene Lang and Ron Perelman.




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